Monday, April 02, 2012

More Thoughs on Crowd funding a single flight...

I've been thinking about a first effort on Crowd sourcing some development...
Here are my random thoughts on a kickstarter type project:

Title:
Unreasonable supporters cross the line,the Von Karmen line. (100km the edge of space...)

Supporter level: (Each level is cumulative IE each level gets everything from levels below)

  1. $10.00 Named as a supporter of the effor, 7 day early access to all blog and media reports.
  2. $50.00 Your business card gets flown to space and back.
  3. $100.00 An I support unreasonable efforts polo/tee shirt.
  4. $250.00 DVD of all raw and edited data, video and cad design documents from the flight.
  5. $500.00 You get an invitation to come to all tests, and a personal individualized video thank you from the team members.
  6. $1000.00 You get one of the actual GOPRO camera's and SD card that recorded the flight.
  7. $2500.00 (Does not include a Gopro) You get to put your Logo on the rocket.
  8. $20000.00 (Includes one Gopro) You get the complete vehicle that made the flight. (Or maybe 10K for the vehicle and 10K for the motor.)

20 comments:

Tegla said...

The bottom of the list contains items that are available only in limited quantities, so for those an auction would make more sense, no?

Dan said...

Love it! When can we sign up??????

Paul Breed said...

Tegla,

The problem is that the Kickstarter model is you pay now and receive something in the future when the goal is achieved.

The auction model is I have it now and I want to sell it.

If I had working rockets that routinely went to the Von Karmen line then I could auction them.

This is a way to partially offset the development costs...

Slightly differnt...

Arrow said...

If you plan on commercial ops after the dev, you could offer launch slots reservations. IE, reserve the first launch, or second if you have a second donor.

Maybe you can use the opportunity to get market info. For example offer different architectures and you can get feedback on which would be more feasible from a business perspective. A slight way to decrease market risk.

Joe Stanton said...

Re: Tegla's comment, I'd say first in with the 20k wins all. You can count me in at some level. To paraphrase Grease, I can't be a rocket scientist, but I can be a rocket scientist supporter.

Anonymous said...

Make your you put Von Karm_a_n in the title, lest the nitpickers get you...

heroineworshipper said...

Kickstarter can probably get you a few hundred bucks, but only 1% of the projects get the thousands you read about in the news. Maybe offering a $1,000,000 contribution should include membership in the Appalachian mountain club.

Gabriel said...

Maybe more rewards on the low pledging space could help. you could offer "unreasonable" badges or pdf fun printable rocket posters. In the high pledge rewards add something like "exclusive rocket engine firing". I like the kickstarter idea.

Paul Breed said...

Any ideas on what a good $10 and $20 rewards might be? Simple signed pictures?I am unreasonable bumper stickers?

Peter said...

I would love an Unreasonable Rocket coffee mug. Wouldn't be cheap enough for a $20 donation but maybe a $40 or $50?

Rueben said...

The $250 data DVD is very tempting, but would there be any ITAR restrictions on the cad designs for those of us in Canada?

Paul Breed said...

First this is a trial baloon concept for an offering, not an actual offering (yet)

And yes any data type offering has ITAR components. If I publish this a a bound book or PDF set then I think I can be clean from an ITAR stand point. Publishing cad files gets hard...

If I open source everything then the reward looses its value, but 90% of the ITAR BS goes away...
The core problem is hard enough by itself that is just sucks that serious brancycles and business restrictions are required because of ITAR.

I could probably raise more $$ by selling experimental rides to the CRUSER program, but once you accept government $$ the ITAR hooks become much more legitimate.

Nick said...

I wouldn't get too caught up in offering "prizes" for low donation amounts. For a project like this, most backers will donate just to see it succeed. If anything the prizes should be geared towards giving greater access, which could mean periodic google hangouts, IRC chats, etc, rather than anything physical.

Joe Latrell said...

Paul,

I like the concept. Will you take paying customers on this flight as well? I have canisters that I want to fly (one per flight). The more flight opportunities the better. They are tiny - only 20 grams each.

Thanks and good luck,

Joe

Anonymous said...

If you had say, 100 contributors, but not nearly enough money to complete the project, what happens to the money? Or, does no money change hands until enough "promises" are accumulated?

peterfirefly said...

nitpick: it's "von Kármán".

The German "von" is always lower case.

Joe Stanton said...

Paul, a $10 or $20 award might be a small jar of sand and some random pieces of anonymous exploded rocket pieces from around FAR. Maybe make some fused rocket glass?

mike shupp said...

Think seriously about selling T-shirts is my suggestion. A thousand tees at maybe 15 bucks each, earning 2 bucks each (after manufacturing and shipping) is not to be sneered at, especially if new shirt designs come out to commemorate each test flight. There are firms that will take over much of the labor -- visit some web comics and see how they manage this.

Also, the same applies to coffee cups and sweatshirts.

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